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Cam Newton’s Pro Day
By on March 10, 2011 at 12:46 pm

One of the most interesting guys in this year’s draft class is obviously Auburn QB Cam Newton. The 2010 Heisman Trophy winner and the star player on the team that won the BCS title, Newton’s NFL success is hard to predict. He didn’t have a great Combine and the reviews of his Pro Day workout at Auburn this week were mixed. So, in order to straighten things out, I figured we’d turn to our resident quarterback, John Congemi, to let us know what he thinks…

Guest Blog, by John Congemi

The entire NFL assembled on the Auburn campus Tuesday to watch quarterback Cam Newton’s performance. The big question was could Newton bounce back from a sub-par Combine experience throwing the football. Cam must have been impressive, because multiple analysts were raving about his performance and the way he can drive the football down the field. My take on the quarterback is that he has plenty of positives and some negatives. I’m sure teams like Carolina, Buffalo, Minnesota, and Washington are trying to convince themselves on why they should select Newton with their first pick in this year’s draft.

The first positive attribute is that Newton passes the eye test with flying colors! He has great size and moves with ease outside of the pocket. During the 60 scripted plays of the pro-day, Newton was able to showcase his three-step drop with movement, and drive the football down the field on his five and seven-step intermediate throws. He displayed more accuracy and better ball location while looking more natural with his technique. If you’re buying stock in Newton, your hoping that his inconsistent footwork within the pocket will improve with repetition.

One of the negatives you always hear about quarterbacks coming from college to the pro game is that they don’t have any experience taking snaps under center. This is very true of Newton and the offense he ran in college. Cam looked better moving his feet and more repetition will lead to more consistency. Remember that Peyton Manning and Ben Roethlisberger operate their offenses out of the shotgun formation much more than people realize. The big question mark for me is will his style of play translate to the NFL? Anyone of the teams that select Cam early are expecting him to take over and play right away. I believe that Newton will be able to be a quality quarterback in the league, but I’m not sold he’ll be ready to do it in year one!

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